Reading and Writing Connections
for this selection:
Formation: The V?s Have It!
Main Idea and Details
- Ask Questions
and Make Predictions to Set a Purpose for Reading
to Prior Knowledge/Build Background Knowledge
thermals, eddies, altitude, ultralight, wake, headwinds
Connect to students? prior knowledge by asking them the following
questions: Why do some bird species fly in V formation? How do
birds fly long distances? How much flapping and gliding do birds do
during a migratory journey?
Build background knowledge by viewing photographs and video of
whooping cranes in flight. (Geese flying in V formation could also
Introduce the selection by making anticipatory predictions: As
you think about the title and the subtitle of this article, what facts
do you think the author will include in this article? What questions
do you think a reader will find answers to in this article?
Formation: The V?s Have It" and other nonfiction selections
that describe the flight habits of whooping cranes.
Library Lookout: Lerner, Carol. On the Wing: American Birds
in Migration. HarperCollins Children's Books, HarperCollins, June
2001. ISBN: 0688166490 Grades 2-12. Summary: A naturalist explores
the migratory patterns of more than 30 American birds. This illustrated
informational book is ideal for short read aloud sessions, research
studies, and students? independent reading.
Revisit the selection to collect details that help readers visualize
birds in flight. Use the details to sketch images of birds in flight
riding thermals and eddies of rising air. (Identifying Main Ideas
and Details; Visualizing Details)
Create a Concept Map for the topic, "Weather Conditions that
Impact Flight." Ask students to reread the selection and collect
"weather words," such as, thermals, headwinds, eddies, and
wake. In small groups, students make a map that summarizes details
how weather impacts migratory flights. (Build Vocabulary; Summarize
Main Ideas and Details)
Invite students to work in small groups to write questions that can
be answered by details in the text. Encourage students to exchange
and answer each other?s questions. (Summarizing Main Ideas)
This article reveals many facts about the flight habits of whooping
cranes. What questions remain? Write questions you still have regarding
the flight of whooping cranes and other birds that fly in V formation.
How could you find the answers, or more information?
How do whooping cranes work together? When whooping cranes fly in
V formation, they are working together to make the migratory journey
easier for all. Describe ways that families work together every day.
Evaluation (Examine Author s Strategies)
1. Why do you think the author started the article with a question?
2. Reread the heading for the third paragraph: Wake...Up! Why
did the author use this phrase for the paragraph? What is the meaning
of the word wake in this paragraph?
3. Authors help readers understand information by making comparisons.
What comparisons did the author of this article use to help you understand
a fictional dialogue between a young whooper and its parent as
they prepare for migration. What things might the young bird be
feeling or wondering? What worries might the young bird have?
How would its parents answer? What things might all the birds
be looking forward to?
an encyclopedia entry that explains how thermals help whoopers
a paragraph that describes how whoopers fly. Think carefully about
your topic sentence so the reader knows what the paragraph will
a plea from a young whooping crane who is all flapped out and
needs to land. (Remember: the ultralight whoopers do not know
the way. They are dependent upon their "parent" to stay
with them and show them.)
Journey North is pleased to feature this educational
adventure made possible by the
Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP).